Darwin – Day 4: Adelaide River War Cemetery

This was our first stop on our first day tour from Darwin.

Adelaide River is just over 100kms from Darwin and was the headquarters for the army and air force in World War 2. The cemetery was built for the 432 men and women killed in action.   I loved the tranquillity of the area.  It isn’t on a main road or in a busy area.   It is set in beautiful gardens.  We arrived very early in the morning. Our tour started at around 6.30 so this would have been before 8am I think. There was still a little bit of dew on the lawns and it wasn’t too hot.






I loved the gardens.  They are so beautifully maintained.



This tree was outside the cemetery. I love the way it twists and turns and is all gnarled. I’d love to know how old it is.

Mindil Market and sunset

Mindil Market is one of the ‘must do’ things in Darwin.  Whenever you tell someone you’re going to Darwin they ask if you’re going to the market.  I even find myself asking people now that I’ve been.

However it’s not just the market that it is well-known for.  It’s the sunset on the nearby beach that attracts most people.  The market is just on the other side of the sand dunes.  Most people make sure they arrive in daylight, buy takeaway dinner from one of the many stalls and go and sit on the beach, ready for the normally fantastic sunset that awaits.  I chose Thai but there are so many nationalities to try.

Once the sun has set, people either go home/to their hotels or go back to shopping at the stalls.  Live bands begin to play as well giving the market a very festive, fun atmosphere.




This performer moved when someone put money in the bowl.  One little girl got the fright of her life when he moved after she put some money in the bowl. She ran back screaming to her parents.





Delicious and healthy???? It is possible.


Cee’s Odd Ball Challenge #31

The Sandridge Rail bridge used to carry trains on a rail line from Flinders Street Station to Port Melbourne.  It is one of the earliest passenger railway lines in Australia.  The line closed in the late 1980’s when light rail was introduced to it’s destinations and was disused for many years.  During that time there was often talk about knocking it down but it holds such historical value to Melbourne and Australia that it remained standing but with no clear purpose.  Eventually it was decided to restore it and use it to link the fairly recently developed Southbank/Queensbridge Square precinct with Melbourne CBD.  It is now an open public space with a walkway, bike path and sculptures which has turned it from a white elephant that no one knew what to do with into a great public space.



Darwin Day 3: Fannie Bay Gaol (interiors)

Fannie Bay Gaol was built in 1883 and used until 1979. I can’t imagine how hard it would have been to live in such primitive conditions.  The accommodation was the most basic; harking back to the days when prison was more punishment than rehabilitation.  It was dirty and depressing. There was no privacy, hardly anywhere to go to escape the heat and rain during the wet season; nowhere to go to get warm during the dry season (even though it is a lot warmer in winter than the southern states of Australia).

It probably sounds like I didn’t like being there.  I did. I found it fascinating because it’s like no other jail I have visited before.  We were there in the heat of the day in the dry season and it was unbearable.




The ‘mattress’ was made of straw and a very thin material.





The gallows.




The Mess.




One of the cells.





Meet Sweatheart


Sweetheart was a 5.1 metre crocodile that used to attack boats, dinghies and fishing boats on the Finnis River in the Northern Territory between 1974 and 1979.  Towards the end the attacks became more frequent so the wildlife officers from the Northern Territory Conservation Commission decided to catch him and move him to a crocodile farm where he and people would be safe.  Unfortunately he died after being captured so they gave his body to the Museum & Art Gallery of the Northern Territory where he is on permanent display.  We watched a short video on the capture which was really interesting.  The Aussie movie ‘Rogue’ was loosely based on Sweetheart.